Changes to food labelling requirements

12 December 2014

Food labelling requirements are changing from the 13 December 2014 and will oblige all food businesses to provide information about the allergenic ingredients used in foods sold or provided by them.

There is a new requirement for businesses providing loose food, to make available the correct allergen information about the ingredients contained in the food they may make or serve, to their customers. For example, supermarkets with food counters, delicatessens, restaurants, takeaways, coffee shops, schools, office canteens, care homes, nurseries, hotels and caterers to name but a few.

Details of these allergens will have to be listed in an obvious place such as:

  • a menu
  • chalkboard
  • an information pack

If the information is not provided upfront, food businesses will need to signpost to where it can be obtained, either in written or oral formats.

Food businesses which supply prepacked food already follow specific requirements but now there is also a new requirement to emphasise/highlight any of the 14 specific allergens in the ingredients list of their prepacked food.

Prepacked products with old style allergen labelling, that have been placed on the market or labelled before 13 December 2014, can still be sold until stocks have been exhausted.

The 14 allergens that need to be identified, if they are ingredients in a dish, are:

  • cereals containing gluten (such as wheat, (including spelt and khorasan), rye, barley and oats and their hybridised strains)
  • crustaceans (for example prawns, crab and lobster)
  • eggs
  • fish
  • peanuts
  • soybeans
  • milk
  • nuts (namely almonds, hazelnuts, walnuts, pecan nuts, Brazil nuts, pistachio nuts, cashew, macadamia nuts or Queensland nuts)
  • celery (including celeriac)
  • mustard
  • sesame
  • sulphur dioxide/sulphites (preservatives used in some foods and drinks) at levels above 10mg per kg or per litre
  • lupin
  • molluscs (for example clams, mussels, whelks, oysters, snails and squid)

If you as a Citation client, and need any further information please contact the Advice Line. If you’re not yet a client, please get in touch today to find out how we can help your business.

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